Frederique Constant was the first Swiss watchmaker to jump on the wearables bandwagon with its Horological Smartwatch that launched in 2015. But the Horological Smartwatch wasn’t a conventional touchscreen wearable, instead it fused smartwatch functions with traditional analogue display, making it more of a quartz hybrid than a smartwatch.
Now Frederique Constant has upped its game with the Hybrid Manufacture, a smartwatch powered by an in-house mechanical movement that the brand says is entirely Swiss, though its parent company is Citizen Watch of Japan.
The Hybrid Manufacture measures 42mm and is available in four iterations – three in stainless steel and another in rose gold-plated steel. Like the Horological Smartwatch, the dial of the Hybrid Manufacture is traditional with an engine-turned centre, Breguet-style hands and Roman numerals.
One of the four iterations, however, is an 888-piece limited edition with a slightly more sporty look, with luminous lance-shaped hands with applied hour markers.
Developed entirely in-house, the cal. FC-750 is a self-winding movement with a battery-powered module on top. A patented shield was developed to house the electronics, in order to prevent the mechanical portion of the movement from being magnetised by the smartwatch module.
The mechanical calibre is tells the time, with hours, minutes, seconds as well as the date, while the electronic module covers the same ground as any other smartwatch – sleep monitoring, activity tracking, health advice, as well as a world time function.
The sub-dial at 12 o’clock indicates a handful of basic smartwatch functions, with the full complement of data available on a paired smartphone thanks to a dedicated app. The watch links to a smartphone via Bluetooth, with the link established through the pusher on the left side of the case.
But the most interesting feature is the built-in equivalent of a Witschi machine that measures the rate, amplitude and beat error of the mechanical movement automatically every day, itself an evolution of the add-on measuring device Frederique Constant unveiled two years ago.
Visible through the case back, the mechanical movement has an open-worked rotor, runs at 28,800bph and offers a 42-hour power reserve, while the electronic module needs to be charged every seven days.
The watch is packaged in a wood box that contains both a winder for the automatic movement and a removable charger that can be used on the go.
Price and Availability
The Frederique Constant Hybrid Manufacture in steel with silver dial (ref. FC-750MC4H6) or with navy dial (ref. FC-750MCN4H6) cost US$3495.
The steel model with a grey luminous dial (ref. FC-750DG4H6) is a limited edition of 888 pieces, priced at US$3595.
And the rose gold-plated model (ref. FC-750MC4H4) is US$3795.
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